Making Sense of the Aftermath

Thomas Friedman once said that no country with a McDonald’s had gone to war with another. Whether this is or remains true isn’t my point. The point is that there are indications that it is possible to look at a culture and know if there is value in it that matches the value of another given culture. If the wars in the middle east and the collateral violence is to end the rule of tyranny and fundamentalism, then we should be able to see that in the values that these cultures hold compared to our own. It is not right to determine what values another culture should hold, but it is fair to say that they should not hold values which are counter productive to the human race. Fundamentalist religion is a nice tidy bundle of such corrosive values, so it should be possible to judge the depth of fundamentalist control of a country by the proliferation of things which fundamentalist religions will not tolerate.

To this end, today I’m going to give a shout out to the people which are helping us see the change, and they themselves ARE the change from fundamentalist rule to democracy and freedom – however their culture chooses to define freedom.

What’s in my music player right now?

ACRASSICAUDA an Iraqi Metal band woooot! They’ve got a classic metal band sound – and I likey

Brutal Impact – “This is a live show of an Iraqi Metal Band called Brutal Impact in Baghdad on the 10th of April 2009 … Sorry for the quality ciz it is a live cam recording … the main purpose of this vedio is to show the World that there are Iraqi Metalheads .. and there are people who like music , Rock & metal …. enjoy it”

Taarma – A metal band from Afghanistan.

Iran has several metal bands on YouTube – check out Mordab and Aliaj  District Unknown

It’s the outlaws that bring change to culture. It is the change that they are which makes them outlaws. When you decide to risk life and limb to play a bit of music that makes you happy, you have become outlaw. You don’t have to like the music that makes them happy but you should appreciate the danger they faced to simply be happy with their music. Think about that. No, think harder. They just want to be musicians or maybe rock stars. They must hide from secret police and fundamentalist bigots JUST TO PLAY MUSIC. Encourage them, it will encourage others. Encourage musicians and it will encourage actors, and artists, and athletes.

How else can we encourage the outlaws? I don’t know yet. Suggestions are welcome.

There is an Iraqi Artists Association

Well, I suppose this is not much of a post really. It’s just on my mind.  One of the ways to beat fundamentalism seems to be support of those elements within that culture to have the freedom to abandon it if they choose. I think that is what freedom is – the ability to choose. In many ways we in the ‘west’ (whatever that term means these days) don’t always have the freedom to choose. It is often taken from us for our own protection or whatever Orwellian excuse can be found. I’ve been thinking of the people that had the balls to stand against tyranny just to play some music. My life seems difficult some days but seeing the bravado of those who hide from the culture police just to play some music puts a bit of perspective on life for me. I’m very fortunate.

While it is the giving time of year, you should pick a secular organization and donate some of the bounty that you have in your life to help the starving.  Atheists for Humanity has lots of choices, and there is this list from Think Atheist. You can Google for others, there are many. It doesn’t have to much, every donation helps. There is also the awesome Foundation Beyond Belief that makes it easy to donate.

There are my thoughts for this Sunday

Life is what it is, make yours what you want.


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